[aur-general] Licenses, GPL3 only

Ronald van Haren pressh at gmail.com
Mon Aug 23 06:36:52 EDT 2010

On Mon, Aug 23, 2010 at 12:21 PM, Philipp Überbacher
<hollunder at lavabit.com> wrote:
> Excerpts from Ronald van Haren's message of 2010-08-23 12:06:24 +0200:
>> On Mon, Aug 23, 2010 at 12:03 PM, Philipp <hollunder at lavabit.com> wrote:
>> > Hi,
>> > I just looked up the GPL notation again.
>> > Here's the relevant excerpt from the wiki:
>> >
>> > http://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Arch_Packaging_Standards
>> >
>> > ..
>> > The (L)GPL has many versions and permutations of those versions.
>> > For (L)GPL software, the convention is:
>> >
>> >    * (L)GPL - (L)GPLv2 or any later version
>> >    * (L)GPL2 - (L)GPL2 only
>> >    * (L)GPL3 - (L)GPL3 or any later version
>> >
>> >
>> > Now besides that this is obviously confusing there's another problem.
>> > How would you specify that a program is GPL3 only?
>> >
>> Since when is GPL4 released?
>> Ronald
> It isn't afaik, but that doesn't matter.
> Both the GPL2 and GPL3 text contain something along the lines of:
> ", or (at your option) any later version."
> You have to remove that to say it's GPL2 or GPL3 only.
> Just because GPL4/5/6/.. doesn't exist yet it doesn't mean you can't
> say that your program can't be redistributed using those licenses.
> I'm a bit conservative in this case, I rather wait until a license
> exists before I say that my program can be distributed using said
> license, hence my program is GPL3 only.
> --

Well obviously, but GPL4 can be as far as 10 years away, if it will be
released at all. Until that time gpl3 or later is equal to gpl3 as
there is nothing later. I presume if gpl4 will be released a similar
transition can be made like was done after gpl3 was released. Most
likely gpl3 will become gpl3 only and... well we can discuss that when
the time is there.
It doesn't make much sense to do this now, it should have been done
when we introduced this scheme (maybe it even was, I don't recall) and
now we should just wait for when it needs fixing.
You can always file a bug if a package is distributed under the wrong license.


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